Even though your green thumb may be stuck inside a big wooly mitten, you can still work your magic in the garden in January. Now is the time to start a few plants indoors that can be transferred to your backyard after the groundhog decides he’s ready for spring…and in the mean time you can drink in their color and yummy smells.
The pansy is a hardy plant that will thrive when it’s chilly outside. Plant a seedling in a container filled with potting soil. Keep your pansy plant in a sunny spot indoors (you’ll want to avoid direct sunlight) and at temperatures between 55 and 70 degrees F. Make sure you keep soil moist and avoid watering leaves or flowers. Transplant the flowers out in the garden after the last frost of the season.
Once you have a collection of blooming pansies, create simple and lovely party favors by wrapping pots in purple tissue paper and tying with a piece of twine.
Or simply snip the flowers at the base of their stem and stick in small bud vases. Pansies are known for the cheerful “faces” on their blooms.
Avoid pesticides and you can even eat your pansies! Freeze in ice cubes for a pretty surprise or flatten on top of cupcakes or cookies for floral fun.
Keep your gardening skills sharp with a few indoor plants and you’ll be ready for those first signs of spring. (Are they here yet?)